How to Manage Remote Finance Teams

How to Manage Remote Finance Teams

The pandemic sent employees home in droves, and to date, many have stayed there to work remotely. There’s a growing demand for remote work to become the norm for many businesses going forward, but what about finance teams?

Well, according to Deloitte, most finance professionals also support working from home after the pandemic. 14.3% want to work from home full-time, 63% want to split time between home and the office, and only 10.7% want to return to the office full-time.

So, CFOs should prepare to keep their teams remote (at least part of the time) for the foreseeable future. To help with the transition, we’ve compiled some strategies to effectively manage remote finance teams.

Check out our tips for managing remote finance teams below.

Invest in Technology

Investing in technology has to incorporate both hardware and software. 

First up, you’ll need to ensure your finance teams have the hardware they need to complete their daily tasks at home. This can include a laptop or desktop computer, monitor, mouse, keyboard, printer, smartphone, chargers, etc.

As for software, your finance team members will likely need access to any programs and storage systems that were used in the office, as well as additional remote collaboration tools. These can include ERPs, as well as applications for accounting, scheduling, project management, video conferencing, and communication. Many SaaS applications are cloud-based, allowing employees to access them from wherever they are located.

Get Serious About Security

It’s crucial to involve IT when setting up teams to work remotely. They can provide employees with additional security measures like company-approved devices, a VPN, and password managers. 

It’s also important to ensure that the company has an established security policy and that employees review it regularly. IT can also assist in providing security by training staff about common threats and popular scams like email phishing.

For employees’ own protection, as well as the protection of clients, it is vital to properly store and send financial information. Account numbers and credit card information should never be written down or sent via email or text apps, and identities should always be verified before releasing any personal identifying information — even when working remotely.

Embrace Automation

Working from home has made many employees realize just how important work/life balance is, so why not give remote finance workers back as much time as possible? Automation is key to saving time, effort, and ultimately, company finances.

Digitizing workflows and processes not only saves time and effort, but improves accuracy by eliminating human error. Best of all, because it’s digital in nature, there’s no reason it can’t be done remotely. 

Simple, repetitive tasks like data entry, purchase approval flows, and receipt matching can all be automated to free up your finance teams for more important tasks like strategic planning and forecasting. 

Expand Your Talent Search

Since proximity to a physical office space isn’t an issue with remote work, you may want to expand your hiring search worldwide. In addition to widening the talent pool for any position, there are other advantages to creating a truly global workforce. Benefits include:

  • Fostering diversity and encouraging cultural exchange
  • Attracting top talent with promise of remote work
  • Opening up business opportunities in new markets

While proximity to an office won’t be an issue, you should keep in mind factors like differences in time zones and observed holidays — but these are easy to work around as long as everyone is clear on their responsibilities during their own work hours. 

Work at Building Company Culture

Building and maintaining a strong company culture is essential to attracting and maintaining quality employees, but working remotely presents unique challenges to this. 

Coffee breaks, impromptu meetings, and spur-of-the-moment social gatherings don’t pop up online the way they do in office, so companies with remote employees need to create opportunities for socializing and team building. Whether it’s virtual happy hours, digital games, or worldwide gift exchange games, you’ll need to make an effort to engage your remote employees.

Beyond the social aspects of company culture, it’s important to ensure that your employees’ professional needs are being met. Ensure they have any home office equipment they need, access to learning development programs, and an ample vacation and benefits plan so they can do their best work.

To learn how Mesh Payments can help your finance team thrive remotely, book a demo with one of our reps.

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